Isaac Anumihe, Abuja
The Federal Government has set aside N2 billion in the 2020 budget for the revival of the 40-year old abandoned Mambilla Hydro Power project.
The budget, according to the Minister of Finance Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, is in line with the Federal Government’s plan to reform the power sector.
She said that the Government also budgeted N200 million for the construction of 215MW Low Pour Fuel Oil (LPFO)/ for Kaduna gas power station and N150 million for Afam Fast Power Programme Accelerated Gas and Solar Power Generation.
Former Minister of Power Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, had said that the construction of the 40-year-old Mambilla hydro power project would cost $5.72 billion, adding that the Federal Executive Council (FEC) had already approved the amount which would be raised as loan from the Chinese Government.
“They (Chinese) have the technology. They have done it before. We are now trying to negotiate the final tranche of the loan,” he said.
He explained that the Federal Government would put in 15 per cent of the cost of the project as counterpart funding.
“We have received Expression of Interest (EOI) from 116 Nigerian companies for the construction. They are interested in providing security, banking services, insurance of goods, transport, logistics. So, we are drawing the guidelines for the procurement. Nigerians will benefit the most. We are going to need 31,240,000 bags of cement, 18,981,000 metric tons of aggregate gravels, stones, granite and sand to mix the cement. We are going to need 42,000 tons of steel. The 31,240,000 million bags of cement have to be transported. Imagine the number of drivers. Also, imagine the demand for tyres,” he said .
Fashola also said that the Muhammadu Buhari Administration has increased power generation from 4000 MW to 7000 MW; transmission from 5000 MW to 7000 MW and distribution from 2,690 MW to 5,222MW.
“We are still delivering additional generation from Kaduna 215MW, Afam IV 240 MW, Kashimbilla 40MW, Gurara 30 MW, Dadinkowa 29 MW; Power for nine universities, 15 markets and two big hydro power plants of 700 MW in Zungeru and 3,050 MW in Mambilla” he said, adding that the government also delivered additional transmission projects from 90 projects nationwide with Apo, Mayo Belwa, Damaturu, Maiduguru, Odogunyan and Ejigbo.